Direct air capture (DAC) specialist Climeworks has taken the latest step on its journey to reach gigatonne carbon capture capacity by starting work on its new DAC and storage facility, Mammoth.

Having begun operations at its flagship Orca facility in September last year (2021), Climeworks is aiming to reach multi-megatonne capacity by 2030 and gigatonne capacity by 2050. 

The company will utilise its recent equity raise of US$650m (£530m) to scale-up its operations by investing in the implementation of large modular DAC facilities. 

Located in Iceland and boasting a nominal carbon dioxide (CO2) capture capacity of 36,000 tonnes per year when fully operational, the plant will be powered by ON Power’s Hellisheiði electricity power plant. 

The plant will also supply renewable power to the CO2 injection sites, which have been developed by Carbfix. 

Read more: Climeworks advances direct air capture with $650m equity funding

“With Mammoth, we can leverage our ability to quickly multiply our modular technology and significantly scale our operations,” commented Jan Wurzbacher, Co-Founder, Co-CEO, Climeworks. 

“We are building the foundation for a climate-relevant gigatonne-scale capacity, and we are starting deployment now to remain on track for this.” 

Digital rendering of Mammoth

Digital rendering of Mammoth

Source: Climeworks

Capable of capturing 4,000 tonnes of CO2 per year, Orca was developed after the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) emphasised the need for immediate CO2 removal measures to be implemented. 

Read more: ‘World’s largest’ direct air capture and storage plant comes onstream in Iceland

The use of modular and compact stackable container-size collector units helps minimise the project’s carbon footprint, while allowing for efficient replication at locations across the world. 

Having set the standard for DAC, Climeworks hopes to build upon the success of Orca to reach gigatonne by 2050. 

“Nobody has ever built what we are building in DAC, and we are both humble and realistic that the most certain way to be successful is to run the technology in the real world as fast as possible,” said Christoph Gebald, Co-Founder, Co-CEO, Climeworks.